Vietnam’s startup ecosystem is making strides toward maturity. From a growing ecommerce sector to the government itself taking an interest in entrepreneurship, it all points toward a growing opportunity for founders and investors alike.
Now a new startup accelerator is about to open its doors to early-stage startups in the country. The CLAS-Expara Vietnam accelerator is a collaboration between Vietnam’s Customer Loyalty and Acquisition Services Company (which was born in Microsoft’s Innovation Center), Singapore-based venture capital and entrepreneurship consultancy firm Expara, and Microsoft Vietnam.
The 120-day program will give participating startups access to Microsoft’s BizSpark and BizSpark Plus packages. Microsoft will also work with the startups to develop go-to-market plans for ideas that the company can bring to its customers.
Expara plans to invest US$10,000 into promising startups at the accelerator program’s mid-point review. After Demo Day, it will invest up to US$500,000 in successful graduates.
The investment will come from the Expara Ventures 3 fund, which is aimed at investments in Southeast Asia. With this fund, Expara wants to be lead investor in seed-stage and series A-stage tech companies, including interactive digital media companies. For its investment, Expara requires a seat in its portfolio companies’ board of directors.
The deadline for startups to apply to the new accelerator’s first batch is November 23, 2015.
What do you think about the opportunities in the Vietnam startup ecosystem? Are accelerators in the country a good way to grow startups beyond the border?
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